If you like flavor-packed recipes that will leave you feeling great, you will fall in love with this jeweled Turmeric Vegan Quinoa Salad. Savory quinoa is perfectly balanced with dried apricots, cranberries, and raisins. Add in crunchy pistachios, and brighten it up with a squeeze of lemon juice for a dish that never fails to satisfy. I have lost count of how many times I have made this recipe, and I think you will agree that it is a keeper.
As an amazon associate, I earn from qualifying sales.
I created this recipe almost twelve years ago, and it is still one of my favorites. I have lost track of how many times I've made it, but every time I do I wonder why I don't make it more often.
I love everything about it - the colors, the texture, and the taste. I would argue that it is pretty enough for your holiday table (or potlucks and picnics).
The combination of turmeric, quinoa, and pistachios turns this vegan quinoa salad into a meal that will keep you fueled without weighing you down.
With limited hands-on prep time, this easy salad makes a fabulous side dish. (I estimate you'll spend less than 10 minutes.) It also works well as a vegan main course - quinoa is such a fabulous plant-based protein.
- Olive Oil: I like to cook with regular olive oil, not extra virgin.
- Green Onions: I like to use green onions because they have a nice flavor, and give the dish some color.
- Turmeric: Turmeric is great for adding a bright yellow color to dishes and has a slightly peppery, earthy taste.
- Quinoa: I recommend using white quinoa for this recipe. It has a fuffy texture that is perfect for quinoa salads, and it is beautiful when combined with turmeric.
- Garlic: If you don't like garlic as much as I do, feel free to reduce this amount.
- Vegetable Broth: I recommend using a flavorful vegetable broth to give the dish some added flavor. My preference is to make my own using vegetable scraps.
- Bay Leaf: The bay leaf will infuse the quinoa with a nice, earthy aroma. Don't forget to remove it before serving.
- Dried Apricots: Dried apricots add a subtle sweetness to the dish and pair nicely with the other flavors in this recipe.
- Dried Cranberries: Dried cranberries are a great addition to this dish because they add a nice tart flavor that balances out the sweetness of the apricots.
- Pistachios: I like to finish this dish with some chopped pistachios for crunch and added flavor. Feel free to use your favorite nuts. Almonds are a great option.
- Lemon Juice: Lemon juice is a great way to brighten up the dish and bring out all of the different flavors in this dish.
Step by Step
Before cooking quinoa, rinse your quinoa well in a fine-mesh strainer.
To make this vegan quinoa salad, start by heating a few tablespoons of olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.
Next, add the white part of the green onions, turmeric, and quinoa to the pan, and sauté for about 3 minutes.
Then, stir in the garlic and cook for an additional minute.
Finally, add the vegetable broth, bay leaf, salt, and pepper to the pan. Bring to a simmer (the point just below a boil) and reduce the heat to low.
Cover the pan and cook quinoa for about 20 minutes, or until all of the liquid has been absorbed and the quinoa is fluffy.
Remove the pot from heat, then stir in the dried apricots, dried cranberries, pistachios, and lemon juice.
Let the quinoa salad sit for a few minutes, covered, for the flavors to combine.
Fluff with a fork and enjoy!
Tips and Tricks
- Don't skip rinsing the quinoa before cooking. The exterior if quinoa is covered in a bitter substance called saponin which can ruin the taste of your dish and cause digestive upset.
- Feel free to play with this recipe and make it your own! You can use red onion in place of the scallions if you like. Try adding more protein by tossing in chickpeas or black beans.
- If you have fresh herbs on hand, finishing with a sprinkle of parsley is nice.
Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to four days.
More Quinoa Salad Recipes to Try
- Mexican Quinoa Salad
- Crispy Quinoa Salad
- Apple Quinoa Salad
- Mediterranean Quinoa Salad
- Avocado Mango Quinoa Salad
- Asian Quinoa Salad
30 Minute Vegan Quinoa Salad with Turmeric and Dried Fruit
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 4 green onions chopped (white and green parts, divided)
- ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 cup quinoa rinsed
- 3 teaspoon garlic minced
- 1 ¼ cups vegetable broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tablespoons chopped dried apricots
- 2 tablespoons dried cranberries
- 2 tablespoons dried raisins
- ⅓ cup pistachios chopped
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Heat olive oil in a saucepan. Add the white part of the green onions, turmeric, and quinoa and sauté for 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 more minute.
- Add vegetable broth, bay leaf, salt, and pepper.
- Bring to a simmer and reduce to low. Cover and cook 20 minutes. Remove from heat. Fold in fruits and cover. Allow to sit for 5 minutes.
- Stir in pistachios, green onion tops, and lemon juice. May be served warm, at room temperature or chilled.